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Community leaders serve food for scholarships

Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune Waiters, from left, Cecilia A. Massetti, Madera County superintendent of schools, Madera County Clerk Recorder Rebecca Martinez; Madera County Supervisor David Rogers; Madera County Assessor Gary Svanda; Madera City Councilwoman CeCe Foley Gallegos; Madera Unified School District board president Al Galvez; Madera County Sheriff Jay Varney and Madera Sheriff Cmdr. Tyson Pogue gather to serve tri-tip or lasagna meals during the annual Camarena scholarship fundraiser luncheon at the Italo-American Club on Friday.


Madera county and city officials spent part of a day serving tri-tip and lasagna to hundreds of people to help put students through college at the 23rd annual Camarena Scholarship Lunch.

The lunch, put on by the Camarena Health clinic, was held to raise money for students going into college to pursue careers in medical fields.

According to Camerena Health director of community development Lizette Contreras, the clinic has provided 149 scholarships since 1995, and this year eight scholarships, each for $2,000, were given out to students throughout Madera County.

“We have students that have been awarded scholarships from Madera, some from Chowchilla, from the mountain area, from the eastern area,” Contreras said. “And this goes to offset the cost of getting into college, into the medical stuff.”

Among the “celebrity waiters,” officials who served guests the lunch Friday, were Madera County Sheriff Jay Varney, Madera City Councilwoman Cece Foley Gallegos and Madera County District 2 Supervisor David Rogers.

“Camarena serves the underserved population of our county, and they’re so important. Health is one of the No. 1 things for people and Camarena provides (for) that gap,” Rogers said. “They closed that gap.”

According to Camarena Health corporate services manager Judith Fenton, 25 people were also involved in preparing the meals. Additional funds, Contreras said, would be put aside to pay for next year’s Scholarship Lunch.

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